History

Our Mission

Chesapeake Fire Department BadgeWe Dedicate Ourselves to Protect and Improve Your Quality of Life by Providing Responsive and Caring Service.


About Us

  • The Chesapeake Fire Department (CFD) is a progressive organization with 3 Battalions, 15 Stations, and over 500 members serving over 240,000 citizens of the City of Chesapeake.
  • From our 15 fire stations, we provide fire protection, rescue, and emergency medical services for the 353 square miles of urban, suburban, and rural areas within our city limits.
  • Our Special Teams include Hazardous Materials, Technical Rescue, Marine Fireboat, SWAT/Dive Medics, Foam Firefighting, and Honor Guard.
  • Our services include the Community Risk Reduction Division, Fire and Life Safety Education, Arson Investigation, Code Enforcement, Plans Review, Environmental Quality, the Office of Emergency Management, and Mobile Integrated Healthcare.

History

Old Photo of the Chesapeake Fire Department

  • 1892: In the suburb of South Norfolk, Virginia, a handful of citizens, concerned about the lack of fire protection in their small community, met to organize the South Norfolk Volunteer Fire Department. Under the leadership of elected chief Captain George Funk, they acquired an old hand-drawn reel that was outfitted with a few hundred feet of hose.
  • 1911: The department secured a horse-drawn hose reel from the Berkley Fire Department who had obtained it from Jamestown. The reel and wagon were pulled by any horse that could be pressed into service when an alarm was sounded.
  • 1915: Mr. Ira Johnson of the Greenleaf Johnson Lumber Company donated a mule to the department which was promptly traded for a horse. The horse was maintained at fire headquarters and used strictly for fire department purposes only. Unfortunately, the feed bill soon exceeded the department's resources and the first official fire house had to be sold to pay the debt. D.W. Raper and Son then donated the services of their horse to pull the wagon to and from fires.
  • 1917: Under the dedicated and excellent leadership of the department's second chief, SH. Dennis, the department became completely motorized. A 500 GPM American LaFrance was purchased and a Ford truck chassis was converted to a hose wagon. The new equipment was paid for within two years.
  • 1963: The City of Chesapeake was established after the merger of the City of South Norfolk and Norfolk County on January 1, 1963. South Norfolk Fire Stations Number 1 and Number 2 joined forces with the Brentwood, Deep Creek, Fentress, Great Bridge, St. Brides, Sunday Ray, Washington Borough, and Western Branch Fire Departments to form the new City of Chesapeake Fire Department.

Today the large municipal fire department provides protection to 365 square miles of residential and commercial development. Chesapeake has 15 Stations to cover the city with 3 Battalion Chiefs, 17 Engines, 3 Ladder, and 12 full-time and 2 part-time Medic Units on duty each day. The department averages over 35,000 calls a year and conducts business inspections, school drills, station tours, demonstrations, and mandatory 2 hours of training each day.

Our Dedicated CFD Command Staff

View all the staff of the CFD in our Directory.